Did you ever have a teacher change your life?

My 5th grade teacher positively altered mine.

Mr. Hansen believed in me.

He asked for my help; had me read passages aloud during class; complimented my use of inflection and dramatic pause; and encouraged me to try out for the school play.

So I did.

The next year, I knew I could succeed.

I had already proven it.

From an average student in the 3rd and 4th grades, to an A student in 5th—I was no longer the shy, introverted girl on the back row.

I had become a confident, willing, taker-of-risks…

A girl who put her self “out there” and wasn’t afraid to fail.

The self-assurance Mr. Hansen believed I could develop was a life-boosting gift to both me, and to my future family.

Because now, when my children come to me—feeling invisible, or scared, or insecure—I tell them about the 5th grade.

About Mr. Hansen. I say, “If I could learn to become more confident and contented with a little bit of encouragement—then you can, too.”

In a way, I’ve become Mr. Hansen.

I now alter lives…

Through belief in my children.

Sure, I see their blunderings, blemishes, and burdens.

But, more importantly, I see their potential, possibility, and promise.

Now, it’s me asking for my child’s help, asking them to read, or to share.

It’s me complimenting and encouraging.

Cheering on risk-taking.

Promoting confidence.

Altering self-perception.

The skinny little girl from the back row is now center stage

In a home filled with children

Who long to know and trust

That I’ll never stop believing In them.

(Thanks, Mr. Hansen.)

Children are likely to live up to...

DeAnne Flynn
DeAnne Flynn is the lucky mother of seven amazing kids (and two adorable bunnies). She craves ethnic foods, comfy flip flops, and all things C.S. Lewis. She is the author The Time-Starved Family, The Mother’s Mite, and Salt Lake City--and speaks frequently to groups nationwide. DeAnne enjoyed working as a news anchor/reporter before tackling her current job, "The Supreme Manager of Busy Lives" (a.k.a. "Mom"). She and her husband Craig love growing their family in shady neighborhood called Holladay.
DeAnne Flynn

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